Now that the trifling matter of securing the future of American democracy is taken care of for at least another two years, I would like to join with guest columnist Mike Jones in saying that the lack of readily available dipping sauce at Chick-Fil-A is a serious problem. I will go one step further and say that it is now the most serious problem that faces western civilization.
A few days ago I was shocked to discover that, apparently in response to the rising costs of thimbles full of dipping sauce, Chick-Fil-A had implemented new security measures to make sure the larcenous fiends purchasing food at Grill 155 or Fresh Creations couldn’t simply walk away with Chick-Fil-A’s high quality condiments. While this is understandable, anyone who has ever observed human interaction for more than 13 seconds realizes that when you add more human interaction to any process, even one as simple as obtaining sauce, you make it infinitely more difficult.
At the time I first encountered Chick-Fil-A’s newly founded Department of Dipping Sauce Security, I was attempting to pick up some food about 20 minutes before a class. It was noon, which means that the best Chick-Fil-A food of the day, that being the first sandwich to be put out, was long gone. The line, as is customary by this time of day, was across the room, down the hall, out the door, and curving around the building no less than six times. There were people waking up in Austin who only had to walk four paces to stand in line.
Under these circumstances, it was a shock for me to find, when the checkout counter was finally visible, that the sauce was nowhere in evidence. Asking about the situation, I was informed that too many people had been taking the sauce. With only moments to go before roll was called at the most post modern class ever conceived of by mankind, I went up to the Chick-Fil-A area to attempt to obtain sauce.
Now, this would perhaps be efficient enough if there were some kind of Pavlovian button you press and sauce pops out, or a retina scan, or something, but no. Not only do you have to ask for sauce, but oftentimes, you only receive one, and it is often the wrong one. The first time I asked for ranch sauce I got a packet of ranch salad dressing. I wanted to say something, but by that time the manager had departed, the laser-triggered alarm system was back online, and the ranch dipping sauce safe was sealed, to be opened again only when valid security clearance was presented. If I stood around any longer, the hounds might be released.
Chick-Fil-A: I come to you in the full knowledge – which I’m sure is knowledge you share – that the food in your place of business is often the only thing available in the Grill that’s even mildly edible. At any other Chick-Fil-A on the planet, not only would the people be rejoicing with as much dipping sauce as they want, but the Chick-Fil-A discount card, which “is not currently accepted at this location,” would be, well, accepted at this location. I could go down the street to the nearest actual Chick-Fil-A and pick up armfuls of dipping sauce without having to submit to a Chick-Fil-A loyalty oath or a cavity search.
While I have never done this, I am sure there are many people who legitimately used Chick-Fil-A sauce in the past to disguise the taste of their otherwise vile Grill food. Net loss to you: a fraction of a fraction of one cent. If Chick-Fil-A is worried about losing that money, you can all come in to work on Sunday. It’s okay. The church will understand. I realize that the difference to Chick-Fil-A qua Chick-Fil-A is probably negligible even if we all stop eating there, since we’re already required to pay for the Freshman 15, Sophomore 20, and Junior Triple Bypass Surgery Meal Plan as part of our residency agreement here. Even so, bear in mind that your restaurant has now gone from providing a valuable public service to being widely hated and reviled – much like President Bush.
The Chick-Fil-A situation has forced me to investigate other meal options. Yesterday, I had a grilled cheese sandwich. I am still preparing myself mentally to enter the Caf, which I have not seen in years. However, I am concerned. This is a bad precedent. If I ever walk into the Grill to find Pudgie standing by the drink machine, making sure that everyone’s cup is three-fourths full and previously unused, I might just have to order out and leave the meal plan behind, as I’m sure many of my peers would rather do.